Alcoholics Anonymous Blog/Video August 26 DonInLondon Step 8 "Amends And Willing"
August 26, 2013: "when we make positive judgements about people, we are looking for the positive in our living situations. When we defer to the negative judgements about people, we are looking for the negative in our living situations." How do we measure life in general? Well, if we are trying to measure something, we do make ourselves prone to self prejudice, unforgiving outlooks and never being quite good enough on our roads to perfection.
The pursuit of happiness? Happiness can be found in the most extreme conditions of poverty, abundance and just enough one day at a time. It really does depend on our outlook, how our needs met on the physical, emotional and spiritual? Why is it when we are children, we might have found more pleasure in the wrappings of an expensive present than the present itself. And is this not true in all our experiences of life. I could make and get a lot of pleasure out of playing with a large cardboard box when I was a kid, and a form of insulation when I was a homeless adult.
I can remember in early childhood having a desire for a drum kit for Christmas. And that Christmas I got a mouth organ. I can remember in early childhood asking for a very small cheap tape recorder, that Christmas I got a top of the range reel to reel tape recorder. And each of those Christmases what mattered most was snow, running around and all the rest of it, most of it forgotten.
I can remember spending large amounts of money on gold trinkets for my girl, I got enough to last for Christmas and birthday, but because I couldn't contain myself I gave them all once to show my love. The gold never helped the relationship, there was love, and yet love was not enough to sustain. Insecurity always made things out of proportion, and the compensation? Another dive into oblivion one day at a time. Money can't buy you love, money cannot buy happiness even though it might be more materially comfortable, there is no satisfaction other than the real thing today. Love!
We all live and learn, if we are lucky we get sober, we learn what it is to love and cherish. We also learn what it is to be treated with indifference or superficiality. And when it comes to understanding step eight, making a list and being willing to make the amend whatever it may be, it needs to come from a place of courage, faith and confidence, with love and not indifference or superficiality. It is so easy to mistake what amends need to be done without doing further harm, we have to be open honest and willing to share our intentions before we take action. If I say I am sorry to you, I am saying I am sorry to you for what I have done. And there is no expectation that an amend is due back because that is not how it works in recovery.
When we are holding on for some reason, to a belief that we are right, to a belief that we have power to control others for whatever reason, we do need to check out our values our attitudes and what we really are about. There are many people in recovery, full of good intention, and full of shit rather than shinola. My life would be wasted trying to correct the behaviour of other people, I have enough of the job on with my own outlook, attitudes and actions one day at a time.
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